Politics & Policy

Whistleblower Complaint Against Trump Involves Ukraine and a Promise to Foreign Leader

President Donald Trump speaks to reporters from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, D.C., August 21, 2019. (Tasos Katopodis/Reuters)

A whistleblower complaint against President Trump, the existence of which was revealed last week, involves the Ukraine and a commitment Trump made to a foreign leader via phone, according to several reports.

The specific allegations in the complaint remain unknown. However, the handling of the complaint has caused considerable controversy as Acting Intelligence Director Joseph Maguire stopped intelligence community Inspector General Michael Atkinson from revealing the details of the complaint to the House Intelligence Committee.

The committee chairman, Representative Adam Schiff (D., Calif.), charged that Maguire acted contrary to what is generally required by law.

Both the New York Times and Washington Post pointed out that two and a half weeks before the complaint was filed, Trump spoke on the phone with newly-elected Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodomyr Zelentsky. Trump told Zelentsky that the latter could improve its relationship with the U.S. by tackling corruption more vigorously, according to a Ukrainian government summary of the call.

Around the same time, Trump associates including lawyer Rudy Giuliani were pushing Ukraine to investigate some of Trump’s political opponents, including Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. Giuliani maintains he was investigating possible conflicts of interest involving the elder Biden’s diplomatic efforts in Ukraine and Hunter’s connections with a gas company based in the country.

The House Intelligence Committee tried Wednesday to obtain more information regarding the whistleblower complaint, meeting with Atkinson in a closed-door session. However, Atkinson remained tight-lipped regarding the specifics of the complaint.

Committee head Schiff came out of the meeting threatening to possibly sue in court to have the complaint revealed.

Schiff asserted to reporters that someone is “trying to manipulate the system to keep information about an urgent matter from the Congress … There certainly are a lot of indications that it was someone at a higher pay grade than the director of national intelligence.”

Update 3:45 p.m.: President Trump urged Ukrainian PM Zelentsky to investigate Hunter Biden eight times during the phone call between the two heads of state in July, according to an official familiar with the call’s contents cited in the Wall Street Journal

However, according to that same official, Trump did not discuss any quid-pro-quo in exchange for starting an investigation.

The new revelations come amid intense speculation into the contents of the whistleblower complaint against Trump, which alleges Trump made commitments to an unspecified foreign leader.

Most Popular


Elizabeth Warren Is Jussie Smollett

Elizabeth Warren has a moving story about being fired from a teaching job because she was pregnant, a story that perfectly complements her political narrative that she is the tribune and champion of those who have been treated unfairly by the powerful. Joe Biden has a moving — and horrifying — story about his ... Read More

Kurdish, Syrian, and Turkish Ironies

Outrage met Donald Trump’s supposedly rash decision to pull back U.S. troops from possible confrontational zones between our Kurdish friends in Syria and Recep Erdogan’s expeditionary forces. Turkey claims that it will punish the Syrian Kurds for a variety of supposed provocations, including aiding and ... Read More

LeBron James Looks Like a Fraud

So, LeBron James claimed that Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey was simply “misinformed or not really educated on the situation” when he tweeted his support for pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. “I don’t want to get into a feud with Daryl Morey, but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at ... Read More
PC Culture

Defiant Dave Chappelle

When Dave Chappelle’s Netflix special Sticks & Stones came out in August, the overwhelming response from critics was that it was offensive, unacceptable garbage. Inkoo Kang of Slate declared that Chappelle’s “jokes make you wince.” Garrett Martin, in the online magazine Paste, maintained that the ... Read More